Facebook could face slack from Canada's privacy group over misuse of user data

Canada opened an investigation into how Facebook handles user data after the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

Facebook is no stranger when it comes to data misuse and in the US it could face a fine of up to $5 billion from the FTC for this. Slightly up north in Canada as well, there are reports emerging that the social media giant mishandled user data and broke local privacy laws.

Representative Image.

Representative Image.

“Facebook’s refusal to act responsibly is deeply troubling given the vast amount of sensitive personal information users have entrusted to this company,” says Daniel Therrien, privacy commissioner of Canada in a report published office of the privacy commissioner of Canada.

Canada opened an investigation into how Facebook handles user data after the Cambridge Analytica scandal, which used a third-party app called TYDL to collect user data, came into the open. The report states that Facebook failed to obtain valid and meaningful consent of installing users, failed to obtain meaningful consent from friends of the users, had inadequate safeguards to protect user info and also failed to be accountable for user information that was under its control.

The regulators intend to take these issues to the Candian federal court in order to have Facebook change its privacy rules.

"The stark contradiction between Facebook’s public promises to mend its ways on privacy and its refusal to address the serious problems we’ve identified – or even acknowledge that it broke the law – is extremely concerning,” said Therrien.

Facebook is currently worth $40 billion more than it was right before the Cambridge Analytica scandal erupted. Mark Zuckerberg in March said he was open to government oversight of social media, and in a blog post said Facebook's future is in private messaging. The company is also working on a WhatsApp-based payments system.

With inputs from Reuters

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